Showmax orders Collective Media doc duo

By Content Nigeria reporter
November 27, 2023


African streamer Showmax has ordered two documentary series from factual production company Collective Media Group (CMG) exploring shocking stories related to sport.

Claire McArdle

Death Before Glory (working title) is made up of three 90-minute episodes focusing on serious crimes in sports, while the three-part series Foul Play (wt) delves into cases of scams and fakery.

Rooted in a number of African countries, including Cameroon, Kenya, and South Africa, CMG said the stories address broader global issues, spanning the treatment of young footballers, the dynamics between coaches and athletes and questions surrounding gender violence in sports.

Both series have been developed by CMG’s Poppy Taylor and Arianna Perretta, who will also series produce, while Claire McArdle and Rebecca Knight will executive produce for CMG.

Allan Sperling, executive head of content at Showmax, commissioned both series, which are being distributed internationally by CMG.

It comes just over a week after the MultiChoice Group-owned streamer announced it would relaunch in February 2024 in partnership with Comcast’s NBCUniversal and Sky, with a new app powered by Peacock.

Showmax was launched in 2015 and is available in more than 40 markets across the continent. It offers original African content, international series, movies, documentaries and kids’ shows.

Founded by former ViacomCBS International senior execs McArdle and Knight, CMG works across the full range of premium factual output, with a particular focus on storytelling around sport.

Since launching in September 2021, CMG has built a range of high-profile projects across sport and factual. Its first feature, Brazil 2002: The Real Story, was followed by The Footballer, His Wife & the Crash, and two series of Air Warriors for the Smithsonian Channel.

In September, CMG produced the opening and closing ceremonies of The Ryder Cup in Rome, and its latest feature, The Footballer Fraudster, was released on ITVX in November.

McArdle, co-CEO at CMG, said: “The intersection of sport and true crime is a space we know well following our award-winning documentary The Footballer, His Wife & the Crash and recent ITVX feature The Footballer Fraudster. We’re delighted to be bringing the experience of members of the teams from both of those films to these series with Showmax.”